Clearlane

Not to be outdone by more tenured auto loan marketplaces, Clearlane is fast becoming a trusted site due to its SafeLook and personal consultant services.

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7.4
Grand Score
8
User Score
7.4
Grand Score
8
User Score
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Clearlane is not only the newest auto loan marketplace contender, but one that melds an infinite number of online shopping options with a personalized (real-life) consultant. Backed by Ally Financial Inc., this broker brings regional and national lenders to you with its trusted team of advisors, who help you find a suitable new or used car. Furthermore, Clearlane does not require your Social Security Number for preapproval.

Grandfolk Scoring
Cost 10/10
Ease 9/10
Cancellation 8/10
Customer support 10/10
Loan amounts 5/10
Funding time 6/10
Credit score 9/10
Penalties 7/10
Payment options 6/10
Limits to coverage 5/10
Restrictions 6/10
Loan origination fee 5/10
Cost
What is the monthly fee?
This depends on your loan amount
Ease
Are loans easy to obtain?
Yes, just apply online
Cancellation
What if I’m not satisfied?
Loans must be paid back in full
Customer support
How do I reach out to the company?
By phone 8 AM-11 PM EST Mon-Fri, 9 AM-7 PM Sat, or email anytime
Loan amounts
What are the maximum and minimum loans offered?
As an online broker, Clearlane does not offer actual loans
Funding time
How long will it take to get the loan?
Loans are approved within 24 hours
Credit score
Will the approval process ruin my credit?
No; preapproval only makes a soft hit on your credit
Penalties
Are there fees for early payoffs?
Depends on the individual loan you choose
Payment options
How can I pay back my loan and interest?
Depends on the terms and conditions of the lender
Limits to coverage
What services are excluded?
Broker does not offer any warranties or guarantees
Restrictions
Cost or difficulty to upgrade?
Refinancing can result in savings of up to $112/month
Loan origination fee
Is there a financing fee?
No loan origination fee from the site, but check with the lender
Age Score:
5
50-65 Years
6
65-75 Years
9
75-85 Years
10
85-Above

Clearlane is a great, age-friendly, digital financing auto loan brokerage site. This marketplace is the newest and youngest among online brokers, but should not be discounted simply because it is still nascent. Clearlane was born of the 2016 tie-up between Ally Financial Inc., and BlueYield, which was your standard technology company specializing in multi-lender auto financing. Ally acquired the firm in order to create a more friendly, fast and efficient auto lending platform that includes a soft application process that does not impact credit score and comes complete with a personalized consultant. 

What’s more, if the applicant is approved and decides to finance through Ally, he or she gains access to flexible terms to buy a new car, used car or specialty vehicle.These include vehicles with wheelchair accessibility and right-hand drive capability. Clearlane clearly goes above and beyond most brokers with not only its consultation services, but also its soft credit check guarantee.

Health Score:
8
Great Health
8
Good Health
8
Fair Health
8
Poor Health

Clearlane is fast becoming a high-value online auto brokerage site. It maintains a clear focus on transparency and ease of use, which positively benefits those who may experience anxiety or increased stress when it comes to marketplace-type sites. The personalized touchpoint of an assigned consultant also goes a long way in assuaging fears, as does the SafeLook guarantee, wherein the applicant does not have to put their Social Security Number.Additionally, and despite the fact that Clearlane began with just over a dozen lenders, it continues to grow its the financing network to include private sellers, franchised dealerships and big banks. 

While parent company Ally could clearly push its own product offerings on applicants, it has yet to do so. This means that even after speaking with a consultant and being encouraged to go with Ally, consumers know that they are truly getting the best deal out there. Being this free of stress and worry should not be underestimated.

Pros:

  • Clearlane is the only online marketplace that does not require a Social Security Number, which means there is no risk to credit scores.
  • Loan requests can be made for business vehicles and RVs.
  • When deciding on a loan from parent company Ally Financial Inc., applicants can source specialty vehicles such as those with wheelchair lifts and right-hand drive capabilities.
  • Refinancing through Clearlane frequently results in monthly cost savings of over $100. 
  • Personalized loan consultants work with you to source the best lender for your set of circumstances.

Cons:

  • As an online marketplace, Clearlane leaves all the heavy lifting to the applicant once a loan is pre-qualified.
  • While Clearlane advertises rates as low as 2.84% APR, those interest levels are by no means a guarantee.
  • The process is simple, but may be too cumbersome for those not necessarily interested in a consultation or a sales-like experience over the phone.
  • Clearlane is explicitly clear in stating that it does not offer any form of warranty or guarantee; service comes with a lengthy limitation of liability.

Bottom Line:

Consumers should not be put off by the latest and greatest online auto loan brokerage site:  Clearlane. As a subsidiary of Ally Financial Inc. and the successor to BlueYield, this site is not only extremely secure and customer-centric, but completely transparent when it comes to putting an applicant in front of the best possible deal. Regardless of whether that deal is for a new car, used car, lease buyout or refinance, the loan sourcing process includes a prequalification check that does not appear on one’s credit score, a personalized consultant and a loan offer within 24 hours. 

While the site does not offer financing, it is backed by Ally Financial Inc., which does come with an excellent array of products and interest rate options. That said, Clearlane does not favor Ally, and simply looks to do right by the customer with no misinformation around guaranteed loan offers, APRs and monthly payments. Ultimately, Clearlane is still growing its network of lenders and financiers, but is on the right path with its personalized touch and focus on the consumer.

Frequently Asked Questions:

What is required to obtain a loan request?  

Clearlane’s SafeLook service means you will know whether you are prequalified for a loan once you speak one-on-one with your personal consultant, and without having to enter your Social Security Number into any website portal.

How long until I know whether I am eligible for a loan?  

Since the process includes a consultation, eligibility can take up to 24 hours.

How do I make payments?  

As Clearlane is a brokerage site only, this division of Ally Financial does not offer payment options. These must be coordinated through the lending agency or dealership directly.

More Information:

Product Details

Overview:Clearlane marries technology and security in just such a way as to put those who may be a little fearful of online auto loan marketplaces at ease. Whether the applicant is looking to refinance, purchase new or used, buyout a lease or purchase from a private party, Clearlane is there throughout the entirety of the loan request process, which includes a personalized consultant. All of these no-fee services culminate in a 24-hour turnaround time from application to approval, with interest rates as low as 2.84% APR.

Package Details:The online application process through Clearlane is fast, simple and secure. There is no need to input your Social Security Number since the site utilizes SafeLook prequalification technology, which means there is no impact to yourlong-term credit score. Additionally, and most importantly, the no-fee service and screening comes with a personalized consultant to help you understand what APRs, rates and payments you can expect. Final loan approval normally only takes 24 hours.

Add-on Services: While Clearlane could push the parent company products of Ally Financial Inc., it does not do so, to the benefit of applicants. Consumers would be wise to investigate such offerings, though, as Ally will finance specialized vehicles that have wheelchair access as well as those with right-hand drive capability.

Additional Company Details

Contract Details:Clearlane is strictly a multi-lender, digital financing platform for auto loans, refinancing and lease buyouts. The forum encourages private party purchases as well as dealership negotiations, but remains an unbiased third party through clear legalese stating that the company is no way able to guarantee low interest rates or reductions in the average monthly payment of a refinanced auto loan.

Warranty: Clearlane is the most explicit and transparent when it comes to putting the onus on the consumer for investigating APRs and loan offers. Its legal disclosures clearly state that Clearlane does not back the rates or terms offered by lenders and does not guarantee that those offered are the best or lowest.

Accreditations: Ally Financial Inc., the parent company of Clearlane, is one of the largest banks in the U.S. by total assets, which were $164 billion in 2016. That said, the company has not been without its share of legal issues and settlements. The most recent was a 2013 settlement around charges of discrimination when awarding auto loans. While neither Ally Financial Inc. nor Clearlane is accredited by the Better Business Bureau, Ally has been given an F rating by the organization.

Company Details: Despite Clearlane being the youngest player in an already-saturated online marketplace specializing in auto financing and refinancing, the provider should not be overlooked. Clearlane grew out of the acquisition between parent company Ally Financial Inc., which has its own storied past dating back to 1919, and long-time California-based technology company BlueYield. The 2016 merger has integrated nicely with Ally’s already powerful suite of banking and loan options, and Clearlane has the potential to become a real go-to name in car buying.

Contact: 

Ally Financial
P.O. Box 380901
Bloomington, MN 55438
Tel: 888-925-2559
Website: https://www.clearlane.com/

Kate Papenberg - Senior Advisor

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